All posts filed under: Comfort Food

Classy Eggplant Parmigiana

Today I want to talk eggplant parmesan. This is not eggplant parm that you pick up at the next door hoagie place. It is not too dry or too greasy. It is not deep fried in a vat of day old oil. It is also not covered in any sort of fake, Kraft sliver of orange cheese. This is the elegant, panko coated, Southern Italian quality eggplant parmigiana. Eggplant parmesan is really a vegetarian’s utopia. It’s like an herbivore version of a Peter Luger steak. ┬áNothing is better than a sweet eggplant, lightly breaded and fried then smothered with cheese and sauce. The best part is definitely when you bite into the eggplant and there’s still a little crunch from the crusty breading. Ariel’s First Red Sauce 1 carton of sweet cherry tomatoes (about 20) 1 large can skinned and crushed tomatoes with the juice 1 large shallot (or two small) 4 cloves garlic sprinkle of sugar basil and parsley 2 teaspoons tomato paste 2 teaspoons cream salt and pepper to taste olive oil I …

Creamy Israeli Couscous and an Airplane Food Rant

This week I’m in California! Before I blog about all food West Coast, I thought I’d give you a little post about eating before boarding your flight to your next vacation destination. Now we all know that plane food is a little less than subpar. If you’re lucky enough to even be fed on a flight without having to pay an extra fee, you will usually be given one of several options: something fake that stains your fingers orange, way over cooked spaghetti with goopy marinara, or defrosted mystery meat in a lean cuisine-like plastic container. Now none of these choices are particularly appetizing. So you have a couple of choices. Number 1: go hungry. If you’re like me and your appetite never seems to be satiated then this is not the option for you. Number 2: pick up several candy bars and chips at the snack stand before boarding. While this is usually the route most people take, including me, it’s bad and you know it. Those snacks are processed and full of fat …

Baked Egg Noodle Casserole Creation

A few days ago I was rummaging around the kitchen. I was exhausted from a summer of running around the city, and congested and sniffly from living with a congested and sniffly Whitney. What I craved was comfort food. I went to our pasta cabinet and I was surprised to see that all we had was a half full box of elbows and a bag of egg noodles. Despite the fact that my Dad says elbows make him giggly because they slide right down your throat, that wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for. I suspiciously picked up the bag of egg noodles. They’re good in matzah ball soup so perhaps they’d be good in my favorite Rao’s pasta sauce. As I was reading the instructions I was inspired. The bag said if I planned to bake my egg noodles, they should only cook for 8 minutes as opposed to 10. Bake noodles? Why hadn’t I thought of that? What could be more comforting than ooey gooey, cheesy baked pasta? I’ve always had an aversion …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Ariel’s Delightful Mac and Cheese

What can be more comforting than something that is warm, filling and cheesy? Today I’m blogging about my first attempt at baked macaroni and cheese. Despite appreciating truly good and fresh food, I happen to enjoy the stuff that comes out of the blue box. But in hopes of finding a cheesy mac that is less hydrogenated and more gastronomically correct, I turned to my favorite Food Network chef, Ina Garten.  Ina’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese Kosher Salt Vegetable Oil 1 pound elbows 1 stick butter 1 quart milk  1/2 cup all purpose flour 4 cups gruyere 2 cups cheddar 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 4 small tomatoes 1 1/2 cups fresh white breadcrumbs Important note #1:  I really trust Ina on what kind of cheeses to use. She really knows her stuff. Unfortunately, according to her gorgeous house in the Hamptons, it seems that her cheese budget is a bit higher than mine. Because of this, I decided just to use 6 cups of cheddar because the gruyere at …